Twitter opens its data to researchers to study tweets about COVID-19

Twitter opens its data to researchers to study tweets about COVID-19

Last week, 75 groups and individuals, including digital rights and freedom of expression organizations, wrote an open letter to social media platforms urging them to preserve and publish their data in moderation .Twitter Inc will allow researchers and software developers access to its real-time data stream of tens of millions of daily tweets about COVID-19, which they can use to study the spread of the disease or disinformation, the firm said in a blog on Wednesday.

That access, Twitter said, may also be used by approved applicants working in crisis management, emergency response, or cross-community communication, as well as those developing machine learning and data tools to help scientists understand COVID-19.Social media platforms have introduced policies to curb disinformation about COVID-19 and have warned that there could be mistakes due to their reliance on more automated moderation systems during the pandemic. Researchers studying the platforms have advocated that firms collect data on this period.

European Commissioner Vera Jourova called Twitter’s decision “a step in the right direction.”

“Cooperation and regular contacts with internet platforms to combat disinformation have been successful. I have consistently stressed the importance of researchers having better access to non-personal data and useful tools, ”he added.Last week, 75 groups and individuals, including digital rights and freedom of expression organizations, wrote an open letter to social media platforms urging them to preserve and publish their content moderation data.In the blog post, he indicated that any developer or researcher with an approved Twitter account will be able to request access to the flow on COVID-19, although they must meet requirements such as that the purpose of their use is “the public good”.Applicants will also need to explain how they will protect the privacy and security of the people represented in the data.

Twitter opens its data to researchers to study tweets about COVID-19

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